ST. GEORGE — Wildlife officials are asking for the public’s help in finding the party responsible for poaching a doe pronghorn in Beaver County late last month.
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources was informed the poached pronghorn was located off Laho Road west of Minersville, according to a press release from the Utah DWR. The poaching is believed to have occurred between May 27 and May 28, with the cause of death being a single shot to the lower midsection.
“This case is particularly egregious because this animal was being monitored and studied in order to allow wildlife biologists to better manage the pronghorn population in the area,” DWR conservation officer Josh Carver said.
According to the press release, the doe pronghorn had also recently given birth and its offspring is not expected to have survived long without its mother.
Anyone with information related to the illegal killing of this animal or any other wildlife is encouraged to contact the UTiP Hotline at 1-800-662-3337. Rewards are available and requests for confidentiality are respected.
The consequences of poaching
“Because Utahns value wildlife so highly, convicted poachers face steep consequences,” wildlife officials state on the DWR website. “In addition to paying fines and restitution, poachers may also face jail time, the confiscation of hunting equipment and the loss of hunting and fishing privileges in multiple states.”
When someone is convicted of illegally killing or possessing protected wildlife, they often have to make restitution payments. These payments go into the Help Stop Poaching Fund, which pays rewards to hunters who help catch and convict poachers.
The Utah Legislature has set the following amounts as minimum restitution for Utah’s trophy animals:
- $30,000 for either desert or Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep,
- $8,000 for deer with 24-inch antler spread or larger,
- $8,000 for elk with six points on at least one side,
- $6,000 for moose or mountain goat,
- $6,000 for bison,
- $2,000 for pronghorn.
If the DWR determines that a poacher’s crime is intentional or reckless, he or she may lose the right to hunt and fish in Utah and many other states. Utah is a member of the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact, which is an agreement among nearly three dozen states to honor each other’s decisions to deny licenses and permits to poachers.
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